Bowl-A-Thon for Children with Disabilities
Photo: Video by kmir6.com
CREATED Aug. 24, 2013
CATHEDRAL CITY - The game: bowling. The players: children with disabilities.
The 23rd Annual Bowl-A-Thon by the United Cerebral Palsy for the Inland Empire (UCPIE) was held Saturday afternoon at Palm Springs Lanes.
"Today we have about seven lanes of kids with disabilities, and we also have Angel View joining us," said the organization's founder, Greg Wetmore, "We've had all those years to raise money to support the programs we run here in the Coachella Valley, specifically our after-school programs which we have five."
Wetmore shared that the people UCPIE serves are between five-years-old and 22-years-old. They have various disabilities from cerebral palsy and down syndrome to autism and other impairments.
During the middle of the fundraising event, Wetmore introduced the highlight--two local children with cerebral palsy received new bicycles fit especially for them. These $5,000 bicycles were donated by Coca-Cola and Desert Health Care District.
"I believe it will make him stronger physically. He has a physical impairment, so I feel like it's going to make his body stronger," said Jacqueline Castro, sitting next to her four-year-old son who suffered a near-drowning in 2010.
The other winner's parents were also thrilled for their son to receive this gift from the sponsors.
"My wife and I are very happy because he received this bike. It will be very useful for his knees. We think this will help him walk," expressed Arturo Melero, whose 14-year-old son was born with cerebral palsy.
The founder said they always welcome the community's help to continue programs for these children part of UCPIE.
"It's events like this that help us get the funding, so we'll keep at it until we get it," said Wetmore.
For more information on this organization and its after-school programs in the Coachella Valley, visit: www.ucpie.org